Pahrump lags behind Tonopah in population race

Pahrump is usually the main driver in Nye County population increases, but in the first quarter of 2014 Tonopah’s population gain of 80 residents outpaced Pahrump.

Tonopah, where the Crescent Dunes solar plant has been under construction, broke the 3,000 population mark mid-way through 2013, according to Nye County planning estimates, they estimate the population rose from 3,083 to 3,163, a 5.9 percent increase, in the first quarter of 2014.

Pahrump still comprises 82.4 percent of the county population. Pahrump gained 48 residents, increasing from 38,543 to 38,591, a 1.1 percent rise. Nye County’s population increased 1.3 percent, gaining 144 residents from 46,685 to 46,829 during the first quarter of 2014.

The Nye County population increased almost back up to the levels during the economic boom, when there were an estimated 46,850 residents at the end of 2007, the county population dropped by 1,669 residents to 45,181 people a year later as the depth of the recession hit in 2008.

Beatty gained three more residents in the first quarter of 2014, increasing from 1,046 to 1,049 residents. Amargosa Valley had 11 more people, with a population of 1,348 residents. The Smoky Valley population rose by 10, from 1,831 to 1,841.

County planners use residential data from electrical utilities multiplied by the average number of people per household as determined in the 2010 Census to estimate population. For group homes like nursing homes and detention facilities, the county uses a trending factor that is checked out annually with telephone interviews.

The population statistics are used to determine baseline conditions for the Yucca Mountain project, to prepare baseline projections for Nye County and communities and for public and private agency planning and management purposes.